The day started off well until the cat had her 6th seizure that I am aware of. Still no reasons, answers or solutions in sight. Slowly and surely the anxiety took root and began to flourish. It was no longer just the cat that gave me cause for worry. I felt myself slipping, but refused to get knocked down again. Instead of letting something I had no control over seep into other areas of my life and set the tone for the rest of my day I gave it to God. I reminded God (and myself) over and over again that I trust Him. After awhile my fears and misgivings were exposed for what they really were — lies. God’s presence in my life is infallible, guaranteed and infinite.
I think back through all of the years and tears of my life, really up until very recently. I knew of, but didn’t understand the true power of the Holy Spirit. There were so many times, so many instances where I could have stopped, stared up at the sky (as I have a tendency to do) and thanked, praised, surrendered, cried, vented, asked and rested. So many times where this simple, yet efficacious practice could and would have mentally alleviated even the most trivial of complications. However, the news of, “Your baby has trisomy 18, and probably won’t survive delivery, or more than a few days at most” is enough to throw the strongest of giants to the ground. In those moments, I had no choice but to scream out loud for God. There was nothing else, no one else who could help me. After three months of ceaseless prayer, it was no longer theoretical. The reality of God in my life could not, cannot and will not be disputed. What a lesson this has been about prayer, trust and perspective. Even the things that don’t necessarily rip the rug out from under my feet, such as cat seizures, I habitually bring them to God because that’s what I’m used to doing. I can certainly say that Nora has strengthened my prayer life. She has proven its power time and time again. These aren’t just my prayers, but your prayers too.
Unless the Lord had given me help,
I would soon have dwelt in the silence of death. When I said, “My foot is slipping,”
your unfailing love, Lord , supported me. When anxiety was great within me,
your consolation brought me joy.
(Psalm 94:17-19 NIV)
Thursdays have become my busy day. I was afforded luxury of getting out of the house to go to Bible study and even to help out in Greta’s classroom again. Nora and Nana hung out together for much of the day. (Thank you, Mom!) Bible study was incredible. It is a Beth Moore study on the book of James. The topic today was on joy and anguish. How the two can coexist (story of life since January!?) and even trade places! I love the analogy that was made between mental anguish and childbirth. The abject pain and suffering that is endured through labor with the beautiful precious baby to come. Through our anguish, of whatever it is that we’re going through – there is going to be, there WILL be something amazing as a result. The mere thought of it has tears streaming down my cheeks right now as I type this. My labor with Nora–physical and mental anguish intertwined. Her delivery–that first cry, her little eyes looking back at me, her second cry after we thought we were going to lose her–intoxicating joy. Labor and delivery, a reflection of our life on this earth and a reminder of what is to come. Can you stand it?
A thin package was delivered shortly after I got home from this particularly significant Bible study. It was a book that Melanie had made from the photos of Nora’s birth. Photos of the anguish, photos of the JOY. What a perfect reminder at a perfect moment. I can’t stop looking at it!
To help the sorrowing people of Jerusalem — I will give to them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, and the oil of gladness to replace their sorrow with joy, and clothes of praise to replace their spirit of sadness. Then they will be called flower trees of goodness planted by the Lord to show his splendor.
“JOY is an abiding God-given reality; a fruit of the Holy Spirit characterized by a profound serenity and inner peace which flows from allowing oneself to be embraced by God’s love and is capable ot withstanding all trials and tribulations of life.” Pope Benedict XVI
You know this to be true when you live it! May God continue to Bless the beautiful Yusko’s souls
Haha, Aleisa, would you have guessed 6 months ago that NorNor would pursue a Master’s degree in Bubble Study?. Love the pics !!. Greta’s smile always brightens my day. And thanks to NorNor my faith and trust in God has been strengthened; looking at her reminds me of God’s Love and Providence. I also pray everyday because of her as when I was a child. Oh, and my English is getting better by learning new words in your blog! 😉
ALEISA, IT IS SOOOOO GOOD TO READ YOUR BLOG AND HEAR THAT NORA IS BETTER AND THINGS ARE GOING BETTER FOR ALL OF YOUR FAMILY. SORRY TO HEAR ABOUT YOUR FAMILY’S CAT HAVING SEIZURES AGAIN. WISH THEY COULD DO SOMETHING ABOUT THAT. THE BOOK YOUR FRIEND MADE FOR YOU, WILLIAM AND THE FAMILY IS ONE OF THE BEST GIFTS EVER!!!! WHAT A WONDERFUL THING FOR HER TO DO, AND IT CAME AT SUCH A PERFECT TIME. SHE IS ONE REALLY GREAT PERSON AND PHOTOGRAPHER. JUST LOOKING AT THE PICTURES YOU POSTED, I MYSELF, FELT SADNESS, HAPPINESS AND SO MUCH LOVE. MY GOODNESS, NOTHING HAS TO BE SAID, THE PICTURES SAYS IT ALL. PRAISE GOD FOR LITTLE NORA ROSE!!!!! THE PICTURES YOU POSTED TODAY IS WONDERFUL. LOVE THE ONE OF GRETA, MOMMY AND “LITTLE DEW DROP”. IT CANNOT GET MUCH SWEETER THAN THAT!! THEN THE NEXT TWO PICTURES OF NORA IS JUST SO ADORABLE, AND THE CAPTIONS UNDER THE PICTURES ARE PERFECT. SURE MADE ME SMILE. LOVE NORA’S LITTLE CHUBBY ARMS AND HANDS. I KEEP GOING BACK TO THE PICTURE IN THE BOOK, THE DAY SHE WAS BORN, THEN FAST FORWARDING TO HER PICTURE NOW. HOW SHE HAS GROWN, FILLED OUT SO BEAUTIFUL AND SHE IS JUST SO HAPPY. THOSE BEAUTIFUL EYES, SWEET LITTLE LIPS AND OF COURSE HER CHUBBY LITTLE ARMS, HANDS AND LEGS. SHE IS ONE BEAUTIFUL BABY GIRL. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE HER!!!! GOD HAS BEEN SOOOOO GOOD TO YOUR FAMILY, AND HAS GIVEN YOU THREE BEAUTIFUL CHILDREN. HE ABSOLUTELY CHOSE THE RIGHT FAMILY FOR NORA. THANK YOU FOR TAKING TIME AGAIN OUT OF YOUR BUSY SCHEDULE TO LET US ALL GET CAUGHT UP ON YOUR WONDERFUL FAMILY. IT HAS REALLY BRIGHTENED MY DAY, JUST KNOWING THINGS ARE LOOKING BETTER. I LOVE YOU GUYS, AND HOPE YOUR DAY IS GOING WELL AND THAT YOU HAVE A GREAT EVENING. GOD BLESS NORA AND HER WONDERFUL FAMILY. PRAISE GOD FOR ALL HIS BLESSINGS.
Made me cry…and filled my heart with joy….again.
She is adorable in the bubbles! She is a light in my day as we miss our little Adalyn who did make it through birth. We know Addy is in heaven with Harrison James, and her new little friend Kinsley. What a joy to watch little Nora grow and thrive! I am doing the same bible study at our church and gaining strength as well. My son and daughter in law(Addy’s parents) are amazing all of us with their strength. These precious babies are so worth every minute of love and prayer given to them. Thank you for sharing Nora with all of us.
Sorry, typed wrong-Adalyn did not make it through birth-she is in heaven now.
Thank you for sharing Nora and your strength and weaknesses with us!!! you amaze me!!!
Thanks Aleisa, for the reminder of the important things! You are such an inspiration!
Could not have said it better myself!
You have no idea what an inspiration this blog has become to me. I find my strength through it and it too has made my faith stronger by giving all my worries to God!
Aleisa…Chairein (Joy to you)! We are doing James too and I especially love what Beth says about praying with confidence. “We place our lives, our loved ones, our needs, an our wants in the hands of God alone. We pray and can know beyond question that God hears.” I’ve been trying something that she suggests…coupling my prayers for wisdom with advance gratitude for receiving it. I think the more confidence I have in God’s ability in advance has really changed the focus of my prayer life.
Also, you are living out your faith for everyone to witness in such a public way. Your story and your family are a beautiful example of how God morphed your pain into joy. You are a beacon of His light and Love for all the world to see. When I look at how you are turning all your trials over to God…I see Jesus in you and joy is your birthright in Christ!
The tub pictures are just pure joy for me… I look forward to them every day! She is so beautiful and precious!
The pictures of sweet Nora are pure JOY! Brings a smile to my face every time!! Thanks for sharing! Enjoy reading and look forward to your nightly posts.
What sweet pictures and heart-warming reminders of how far she’s come! Blessings and continued prayers for you all. Thanks for sharing your heart!
You’ve totally captured my heart… with your story and this sweet little face!
Hi Alesia… Love reading your posts..and seeing Miss Nora in the bubbles!! About your cat’s seizures–and I apologize if you addressed this and I missed reading it–but does your kitty go outside? My daughter lives in Florida (I know you’re “up north”) and one of her cats had eaten a little black lizard — they are all over the place down there. He acted weird and had some seizure like activity. The vet told her it was from the lizard, so she keeps them inside now. (They only went out to their screened porch to begin with, but the lizards are tiny and could get into the porch.) Could your kitty be eating any mice, or chippies that have been poisoned to get rid of them? Just a thought. Prayers continue for you and your family.
Wanted to let you know that your 3 birds were at the Bengal’s game today!
They did 2 fly-bys! 😊